Executive summary

On January 1, 2011, the ministry released the Standards and Guidelines for Consultant Archaeologists.

All consultant archaeologists working in Ontario must comply with these Standards and Guidelines.

Technical bulletins

To help archaeologists understand and comply with the Standards and Guidelines, the ministry has produced the following bulletins.

Archaeological sites and site forms

This bulletin is intended to help archaeologists understand their role in contributing to a high-quality public record of archaeological sites in Ontario. Every time they find or work on an archaeological site, archaeologists are required to file a site form with the ministry. The bulletin explains how to use Ontario’s Past Portal (PastPort) to file site forms.

Archaeology of rural historical farmsteads

This draft bulletin is intended to help consultant archaeologists meet fieldwork and reporting standards for archaeological sites that are rural historical farmsteads. It includes advice for every stage of the archaeological assessment process. It also outlines how to evaluate the cultural heritage value or interest of such sites, how to decide whether to recommend further work and how to determine the most appropriate mitigation strategy. The ministry is accepting feedback on this draft as it continues to develop it. Please send your comments to archaeology@ontario.ca.

Winter archaeology

The Standards and Guidelines do not permit archaeological fieldwork in adverse weather conditions, including when the ground is frozen or covered in show. This bulletin is intended to help consultant archaeologists develop appropriate measures to winter weather conditions when they are required to work in frozen, snowy conditions.

Before proceeding with any winter fieldwork, licensed archaeologists must discuss and request confirmation of their proposed strategy with the ministry.

Engaging Aboriginal communities in archaeology

This bulletin is intended to help consultant archaeologists engage Indigenous communities on their archaeological projects as effectively as possible. It summarizes the requirements for engagement in the Standards and Guidelines and provides information and resources to help consultant archaeologists meet these requirements.

Other resources

These pages provide information on the administrative processes related to the Standards and Guidelines and advice on how to produce reports that pass ministry review: